This revelation of a book—part memoir, part guide—is an indispensable catalyst and companion for those who seek to let go of their mental baggage. Linda uses the metaphor of unpacking our mental baggage and repacking it in becoming ourselves. Its title, Did You Pack Your Bag? implies taking individual responsibility for our mental baggage, in other words, did you pack or select the various beliefs and assumptions that you hold in your mind, or did someone else?
The book is in three parts with a field guide to traveling light; the bags within our bags; how I unpacked my mental baggage and became myself with reflections on becoming a mother, on becoming a dancer, on becoming a teacher; a checklist for mental baggage and additional resources. The purpose of the book is to inspire the reader to reflect on the nature of social conditioning, in order to better understand the beliefs and assumptions they hold, and who they understand themselves to be.
As Linda reflects on the nature, quantity, and quality of the mental baggage that many people carry, she identifies the bags within bags, including childhood, culture, religion, gender and sexuality, race, education, media, and adult. Her key message: “Know who you are,” is elegantly woven into her writing, teaching, parenting, and performing. As she unpacks her “bag” for the reader, she explains why she has decided to leave some ideas and values behind while keeping or updating others. She reveals how the weight of mental baggage need not be permanent, intrinsic, or necessary, and like physical baggage, it can be emptied out, its toxic contents identified and discarded. She explains how rather than allowing old triggers to cause repeated suffering, something as simple yet radical as choosing to feel good instead of bad, can assist us to own the process of knowing who we are.
Prof. Jack Whitehead – University of Bath England says:
“Linda Vargas has written an important and engaging book which in Linda’s words is: “‘For young people and those who take care of them. May you be inspired to repack your mental baggage in order to find greater self-worth and self-acceptance, and greater empathy for others”.
The book is in three parts with a field guide to travelling light; the bags within our bags; how I unpacked my mental baggage and became myself with reflections on becoming a dancer, on becoming a teacher, a checklist for mental baggage and additional resources. I particularly like the metaphor of unpacking our mental baggage and repacking the baggage in becoming ourselves. The bags within our bags include childhood, culture, religion, gender and sexuality, race, education, media, and adult.
The reason this book captivated my imagination was through Linda Vargas’ willingness to communicate her meanings and processes within a narrative of how Linda, unpacked and repacked her own mental baggage in becoming herself. I wholeheartedly recommend this book to all those young and older persons who are seeking to live as loving and productive a life as possible”.
Dr. Daniela Franca Joffe says:
“For many years, even in my happiest moments, I felt weighed down by the world and by life. I thought that feeling was simply part of who I was: part of being an empath, part of having gone through certain things. This book helped me see that the weight I was carrying was not permanent, intrinsic, or necessary. It was my own mental baggage, accumulated over the course of my life—and, like physical baggage, it could be emptied out, its toxic contents identified and discarded. Rather than allowing old triggers to cause me repeated suffering, I could do something as simple yet radical as choosing to feel good instead of bad. I could own that process. This revelation of a book—part memoir, part guide—has been an indispensable catalyst and companion for my journey of letting go. I am a different person because of it.”